Bill Foster’s Refusal to Attend Fourth Debate Confirms Inability to Defend Corporate-sponsored Voting Record

NAPERVILLE, IL— Today, the Qasim for Congress campaign received confirmation that Rep. Bill Foster has declined to participate in an upcoming Congressional Forum for Illinois’ 6th and 11th districts. Despite Rep. Foster’s absence, Qasim Rashid, a human rights lawyer and Democratic candidate for US Congress in IL-11, remains committed to participating.

The public forum, specifically scheduled to accommodate the Congressional calendar, takes place on Wednesday, January 24 from 6:00-7:30 pm at the Naperville Municipal Center. It is hosted by the Democratic Party of DuPage County and the Naperville, Lisle, and Winfield Township Democratic Organizations. This is the fourth time Rep. Foster has declined to participate in or canceled such an event, confirming his inability to defend his corporate-influenced voting record to his constituents.

“Democracy is at stake in the 2024 presidential elections, and now, due to Rep. Foster’s refusal to stand before the people of IL-11, it is at stake in our district,” said Qasim Rashid. “Voters deserve a complete understanding of candidates’ platforms before they cast their votes on March 19, and Rep. Foster is actively working to keep voters in the dark.”

Foster’s refusal to participate in public forums is a disservice to the people of IL-11 and follows the anti-democratic tradition set by Republicans like Donald Trump. By avoiding the people he was elected to represent as a public official, Foster is weakening our democracy.

“Rep. Foster has turned his back on the district,” said Sydney Nelson, Qasim for Congress’ Communications Director. “It’s inexcusable, especially with so little time before early voting begins. As a resident of IL-11 myself, I believe our district deserves a leader who engages with us and answers the hard questions.”

Rep. Foster’s reliance on corporate donations, including Exxon, Amazon, and UnitedHealth, has influenced him to vote based on special interests, not the needs of his constituents. Now, he is refusing to engage in public forums that would hold him accountable for his record. Qasim Rashid is running a 100% people-funded campaign to ensure his priority will always be the people of Illinois’ 11th District. In addition to participating in public forums, he continues to meet voters in person at local events and through the campaign’s robust canvassing efforts.


About Qasim Rashid

Qasim Rashid is a human rights lawyer, author, and speaker. A resident of Naperville, IL, Rashid is happily married to his wife Ayesha Noor of 16 years. They have three children in Naperville public schools. Rashid has spent his career championing the values of economic and social justice, environmental protection, and accessible healthcare. His campaign is powered by the people and refuses fossil fuel and all other corporate contributions.

For press inquiries, please contact Communications Director Sydney Nelson at For more information or to join the campaign, please visit or follow @QasimRashid across all major social media platforms.